I jumped onto the idol anime sensation that was Love Live! very late and completely fell in love with it. I’d be lying if I said that tsundere Eli wasn’t among one of my favourite characters from the show. So I was really excited to see this latest alter figure of Eli from the Love Live! mobile game. She’s based on a sculpt from Takafumi Tobita and releases in September and is absolutely gorgeous and eye catching.
You can grab a pre-order now for ¥19,224. Damn that chequered pattern design is totally stunning!
If you’ve seen Love Live! and Love Live! Sunshine and are pining for more school idol shenanigans, then this is the movie you’ve been waiting for.
Love Live! The School Idol Movie continues after the events of season two Love Live! and sees μ’s taking part in a event to raise awareness for an even bigger scale Love Live! idol contest to be held at Akiba (Tokyo) Dome. Due to the stakes being higher by holding the contest in a much larger venue, the organisers send the nine girl idol group to New York where they’re holding a concert in Time Square. This results in some mini adventures along the way but none more evocative than the chance encounter Honoka has with a female Japanese singing busker who imparts some valuable advice to her which helps her along the way in deciding what to do with the impending demise of μ’s, now that the third year students are about to graduate.
Before too long, they’re back in Tokyo where they realise they’re now celebrities complete with fans who are clamouring for pictures and autographs. All this attention begins to have an effect on Honoka and the others as they begin to see the expectations placed on them now that they’re a fully fledged idol group very much in the public eye. μ’s decide to hold a concert in the lead up to the Love Live!, however they enlist the aid of unexpected allies which has to be seen to appreciate the scope of the performance.
The movie has everything what you’d expect from such a highly polished anime and in that regard, it doesn’t disappoint. The songs are great and catchy and very idol-y (not a word, I know). The costumes during the performances are so cute, detailed and very colourful with that Kotori touch we’ve all come to love. The artwork has been elevated a touch from the series, I’m guessing because they had a bigger budget, in either case it shows with the backdrops which are very detailed and not so static like some that were in the regular series.
And the script itself while not 100% strong like the series, is still very cute with a heartfelt message behind it. Once again the choreography is on point however I found some of the dance animations looked sharper and more intricate in the series. Maybe I was expecting too much as I absolutely loved the first two seasons. One thing I did find surprising maybe even disappointing, was the lack of songs in the movie from μ’s. I honestly was expecting a lot more considering that it was a full length movie and not a twenty minute episode but that’s a small observation.
All in all, it’s a very enjoyable watch and definitely a movie that warrants repeated viewings, if anything just to hear the songs and to watch them dance. The girls are as cute as ever and it’s great to see them together again.
Welcome to the colourful world of school idols, if you haven’t been exposed to this before then you’re in for a ride and a half. A rollercoaster of music, best friends, emotions, laughter and many, many tears!
Love Live! tells the story of three childhood friends, Honoka Kosaka, Kotori Minami and Umi Sonada. They all attend Otonokizaka High School as second year students and whose school existence becomes threatened when the school announces it’s closing due to dwindling enrolment numbers.
Honoka noticing that school idols are highly popular comes up with the idea of forming a school idol group to attract students to the school to prevent the closure. It isn’t long before her two best friends, Kotori and Umi join up with her and form a trio known as μ’s (Muse). After having a less than a successful debut and vowing to not give up and continue, the trio soon finds themselves with other students wanting to join up, harbouring their own idol dreams.
This results in the other members joining them over time and forming a nine member girl group. The other members are Eli Ayase, Rin Hoshizora, Maki Nishikino, Nozomi Tojo, Hanayo Koizumi and Nico Yazawa. The girls set their sights on entering the school idol project known as Love Live! A competition that pits schools from across Japan in a singing talent quest with a trio of girls called A-RISE riding a massive wave of popularity and success. μ’s realise that A-RISE are their biggest threat and competition despite a few of the girls having massive fangirl feelings for them.
The anime revolves around these nine new best friends coming together despite their differences, working themselves out and sharing their experiences together. From early stumbling beginnings to a very polished unit, it’s a very entertaining ride and a joy to watch. And Eli Ayase has to be one of the best tsundere’s of recent times, this girl is absolutely adorable! From rehearsals to beach trips, family visits and various concerts in different locations, it’s great to see how μ’s learn from each other and work together. As with all great stories though, it’s not without some sadness which I won’t go into (no spoilers!) but the show ends nicely wrapping up all loose ends.
It’s presented as a 26 episode series which translates to two seasons of 13 episodes each. Even better, there’s a new show continuing the school idol experience called Love Live! Sunshine which I’m about to start watching. All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed this anime, more than what I thought I would. It’s filled with great characters, catchy J-Pop tunes, stunning animation scenes and beautifully rendered 3D dance scenes with a gorgeous fluidity to each scene. The dance scenes themselves are wonderfully choreographed and you can clearly see that dance consultants were used for these scenes, they’re very polished and what you would expect to see in an idol show.
If you haven’t watched it yet, I can’t highly recommend it enough for all the above reasons and more. You’ll laugh, cry, sing and dance along…I guarantee it!
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for a while, you’d have heard, watched or know of the series, Love Live! Fans of the series can now get even more excited with the news of the upcoming rhythm based game, Love Live! School Idol Festival ~after school ACTIVITY~, which is bound for the arcades in Japan. To build hype for the launch, Bushiroad and Square Enix have released the 30 second trailer below.
The mobile version of the game already has 14 million registered users in its home territory and 20 million across the globe. And no…no release date for the game as yet. Bummer.
Here’s something unique to Japan. 7″ Android tablets adorned with the kawaii characters from Love Live! The tablets are being offered through the Dospara stores and are being manufactured by Thirdwave Diginnos. They’re being made available with different images of the 9 young ladies that star in the series.
Japandaman would love to get his hands on one of these, how cool d they look?
Lawson is a popular franchise of convenience stores in Japan and like most stores tend to run promotions from time to time. They recently announced a couple of new ones for the otaku public.
First up, there’s the swimming anime, Free!, in which customers can buy 2 collaboration Calbee products in order to receive a snazzy poster which can be seen below.
You can also download the Android and iOS Lawson app which will give you access to a Free! wallpaper for your smartphone. Knowledge of Japanese will be required for the app.
The second promotion is for Love Live!, the hugely idol anime with matching game. The promotion kicks off on March 18 and will consist of a lucky draw lottery where you can win unique Love Live! t shirts. You’ll need to gain entry to the promotion by purchasing a Kirin drink and then you’ll also be able to select your favourite girl for the promo campaign.